Dimension Scanning Probe Microscope from Bruker Nano Surfaces, the World’s Most Multifunctional SPM

Topic List

NanoScope V - World’s Best Controller
New Easy-AFM for Maximum Productivity
Outstanding Flexibility and Functionality
Widest Application Suitability
Extensive Range of SPM Techniques
Dimension V Specifications
With Dimension Hybrid XYZ Head
With Dimension Open-Loop Head
Sample Size
Sample Holders
Tip/Cantilever Holders
Microscope Optics
Tip Viewing
Vibration Isolation
Power Requirements
Microscope Weight


The Dimension® range performs all the major scanning probe microscopy techniques and the widest range of standard and advanced characterization applications, making it the world’s most multifunctional SPM. The result of more than 15 years of design optimization and enhancement, the Dimension offers unmatched flexibility via a high-speed fifth-generation controller, choice of closed-loop XYZ and openloop scanners, and numerous imaging mode options. A host of other innovative features and outstanding performance make the Dimension series one of the most sought-after SPM systems in research and industry.

  • NanoScope® V controller Measures tip-sample / cantilever dynamics (50MHz data capture)
  • Reduces time looking for small features (5120x5120 pixel density)
  • Displays & acquires 8 images simultaneously
  • Hybrid XYZ scanner for maximum performance
  • Delivers low Z sensor noise
  • Ideal for advanced spectroscopy
  • Multifunctional modular platform
  • Permits wide range of SPM techniques
  • Large sample stage
  • Images small & large specimens in liquid or air

Figure 1.Dimension V SPM

NanoScope V - World’s Best Controller

Bruker’s new NanoScope V controller lets Dimension users get out of the RMS world and live in the now. By providing fast 50MHz data capture, the new controller allows measurement of tip-sample/cantilever dynamics, enabling researchers to study the influence of mechanical properties on the physics of probesample interactions. Researchers can also probe cantilever vibrational spectra as a function of tip-sample separation.

Not only does this advanced controller’s unprecedented high-speed data acquisition facilitate the examination of timescales previously inaccessible to SPM users, it allows measurement of Brownian motion to identify cantilever resonant peaks and calibrate the cantilever spring constant.

The NanoScope V delivers high-pixeldensity images, up to 5120 x 5120, reducing the time required to search for low-density features distributed over large areas, eliminating the need to re-scan when pursuing enhanced detail on hidden features, and describing the surface 100X better than an image with 512 x 512 pixels. Furthermore, the minimization of repeated scanning preserves sample integrity.

The NanoScope V enables up to eight images to be simultaneously displayed in real-time (and acquired for analysis) with unprecedented signal-to-noise ratio. This is the only system that can capture and display a friction image in trace and retrace, along with height and error at multiple setpoints. The system can produce images of height, deflection, TUNA, and two channels of friction, as well as examination of all tapping and all torsion data channels simultaneously.

The NanoScope V controller’s high-speed FPGA delivers feedback in 2µs with independent gain and frequency on digital Q control. Multiple independent lock-in amplifiers permit tapping and torsion, harmonics in EFM, and observation of a higher-order vertical and lateral movement.

Figure 2. The new high-speed data capture allows the user to monitor tip-sample interactions during a force pulling experiment in a time scale that was not possible before. Figure b is a detail of the area circled in graph a. Figure c is further detail of the circled area in graph b.

New Easy-AFM for Maximum Productivity

For the ultimate in streamlined operational simplicity, Easy-AFM™ offers an intuitive, easy-to-follow graphic user interface for new or infrequent SPM users. It reduces the time for initial setup by automatically adjusting the scanning parameters, and obtaining highquality TappingMode™ in air images on most samples at a push of a button. Easy-AFM is ideal for multi-user environments.

Outstanding Flexibility and Functionality

A large range of functions is provided to control the SPM for custom experiments and nanoscale research (e.g., nanomanipulation in X,Y, and Z; automated scanning; nanolithography with different tipsample interactions). These functions can also be called from any programming language that can act as a client of Microsoft’s Component Object Model (COM), including LabVIEW, and MATLAB™. Unsurpassed Performance with the Hybrid XYZ Head

The Dimension system is offered with a choice of the Hybrid XYZ head or the standard Dimension open-loop head. Each of these scanners is constructed of rigid, low-vibration materials that guarantee low-noise specifications while providing superior reliability.

The Dimension Hybrid XYZ scanner offers lower Z sensor noise and combines the benefits of the industryleading tube scanner technology with a uniquely designed sensored Z scanner to deliver revolutionary performance in a three-axis closedloop scanner. These advanced capabilities make it possible to perform highly accurate force curves and “pulling” techniques, while still delivering high-resolution images. Closed-loop feedback provides precise X-Y control for nanomanipulation, with linear scans that are accurate and independent of X-Y offset and scan size/angle.

Due to the scanner’s unique engineering, the collection of accurate topographic data requires less frequent and extensive calibration than other scanners.

The Dimension open-loop head scans up to 90µm in X-Y and up to 6µm in Z. This scanner includes a piezoelectric tube scanner, a laser, and a quadrature optical detector. It uses advanced laser tracking to ensure that the laser beam reflects off the same spot on the cantilever throughout raster scans, maintaining a constant, low tip-sample force over the entire scan area. This head also maintains the low noise levels necessary for resolving single atomic steps on epitaxial thin films, or measuring sub-Angstrom surface roughness on ultrasmooth surfaces.

Widest Application Suitability

In addition to superior scanning, electronics, and performance, the Dimension utilizes many other innovative, multifunctional design features. A large sample stage permits scanning specimens up to 8 inches in diameter and optionally 4 inches thick. It has the ability to scan in air or liquid and offers a host of add-on imaging modes. The Dimension has excellent measurement and analysis reliability for a vast range of applications including:

  • Electronic materials
  • Thin films
  • Advanced materials
  • Tribology
  • Biotechnology

Extensive Range of SPM Techniques

The Dimension provides researchers the ultimate, expandable platform for both standard and advanced SPM scanning modes including:

  • Contact Mode
  • TappingMode
  • PhaseImaging
  • Lateral Force Microscopy (LFM)
  • Magnetic Force Microscopy (MFM)
  • Force Modulation
  • Force Distance (Force Spectroscopy)
  • Electric Force Microscopy (EFM)
  • Scanning Capacitance Microscopy (SCM)
  • Scanning Spreading Resistance Microscopy (SSRM)
  • Tunneling Atomic Force Microscopy (TUNA)
  • Conductive Atomic Force Microscopy (CAFM)
  • Scanning Tunneling Microscopy (STM)
  • Torsional Resonance Mode (TRmode)

Dimension Specifications

With Dimension Hybrid XYZ Head

  • X-Y scan range: 90µm square; – Z range: Imaging mode: nominal 8µm ±6% or better
  • Force Curve mode: nominal 7µm ±6% or better
  • Vertical noise floor: <0.05nm RMS (open loop in appropriate environment)
  • Integral X-Y nonlinearity: <1% typical
  • Integral Z nonlinearity: <1% typical
  • X-Y noise level: Closed-loop feedback activated: <1.8nm RMS
  • X-Y Sensor noise level: Open-loop: <1.2nm Adev (Ra)
  • Z Sensor noise level: Force Curve bandwidth of 0.1Hz – 5KHz, 0.1nm RMS max.
  • Typical Imaging bandwidth 0.06nm RMS max.

With Dimension Open-Loop Head

  • X-Y scan range: ~90µm square
  • Z range: ~6µm
  • Lateral accuracy typically within 1%, max. 2%
  • Provides full 16-bit resolution on all axes for all scan sizes and offsets

Sample Size

  • =150mm diameter (=200mm with optional chuck)
  • =12mm thick (adapters available for thicker samples)

Sample Holders

  • 150mm vacuum chuck for hard disks, semiconductor wafers, and other samples
  • Interchangeable adapters for centering hard disks
  • Removable wafer-locating pins
  • Vacuum pump
  • Magnetic holder for samples 15mm diameter and 6mm thick
  • 200mm vacuum chuck for 150mm and 200mm wafers (optional)


  • Enhanced motorized positioning
  • 125mm x 100mm inspectable area
  • 2µm resolution
  • 3µm repeatability unidirectional (10µm max.)
  • 4µm repeatability bidirectional for X-axis, 6µm for Y-axis

Tip/Cantilever Holders

  • Tapping/contact modes
  • Force modulation/STM holders (optional)
  • Fluid cell and tip holder for working with liquid, 7mm deep (optional)

Microscope Optics

  • 150µm to 675µm viewing area
  • Motorized zoom and focus
  • ~1.5µm resolution
  • Computer-controlled illumination
  • Video image capture

Tip Viewing

  • On-axis, real-time via microscope optics

Vibration Isolation

  • Silicone vibration pad
  • Vibration isolation table (optional)


  • NanoScope V

Power Requirements

  • 700W; 100, 120, or 240V single-phase; 50 or 60Hz

Microscope Weight

  • ~150lb (68kg)

Note: Performance specifications are typical and subject to change without notice.


This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Bruker Nano Surfaces.

For more information on this source please visit Bruker Nano Surfaces.

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